In the last decade, people have been coming up with innovative ways to grow their own vegetable supplies. However, most growers face the challenge of finding the right methods for raising their plants. Unlike most vegetables, mushrooms can thrive indoors since they grow well in dark, damp, and cool environments. The best place to grow your mushrooms at home is the basement or in a dark room where they aren’t exposed to too much sunlight.
There are different types of mushrooms that can be grown indoors, including shiitake, oyster, Portobello, button, and enoki. However, each of these species thrives in different growth mediums. Most growers use a mushroom substrate to grow their mushrooms at home. In this article, you will be able to look at some of the steps to take to grow mushrooms at home.
Step 1: Add Spores to the Growing Medium
Unlike most plants that grow from seeds, mushrooms grow from spores. To grow your mushrooms, the first step is to prepare your substrate and to fill your planting tray. Remember to leave an inch of space at the top and then to spread the spores. It’s advisable to keep this environment as sterile as possible to prevent other types of fungi or mold from growing.
Step 2: Ensure the Soil Is Moist at All Times
As stated before, mushrooms thrive in a cool and humid environment. This means you need to keep the soil moist throughout the growing process. To maintain a humid environment, mist or spray your plants at least once a day.
Step 3: Incubate the Spores
During the initial stages of growth, which are the first three weeks, the soil temperatures must be incubated at 70 degrees Fahrenheit to ensure optimal growth. You can either keep the trays in a warm section of the house or place them on a seedling heating mat. Regularly measure the temperatures using a soil thermometer to maintain the correct temperature. Higher temperatures can potentially kill the spores.
Step 4: Lower Temperatures to 55-60 Degrees
After a few weeks, root-like growth or mycelium may start to appear. When the entire planting tray is covered in this growth, it’s time to lower temperatures. Drop the temperature to about 55-60 degrees, and remove the heating pad. To maintain these temperatures, cover the mycelium with an inch of potting soil. A few days later, primordia (tiny mushrooms) will start sprouting.
Step 5: Harvest
Most mushrooms take between four to five weeks to grow fully. Before harvesting, check whether the caps are fully open and have separated from the stems. If the mushrooms are left for an extended period, they start to turn brown and get classified as cremini mushrooms. Allowing the mushrooms to grow into their final stage of growth can make them develop larger caps. When harvesting, it’s advisable to use a sharp knife to cut the stem. This way, you can avoid damaging the surrounding growth.
Growing mushrooms has become one of the easiest tasks you can perform at home. With these steps, you don’t need to buy mushrooms at the food market. Instead, you can grow your own.